Virginia to Alaska and back on an '86 Yamaha Radian

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by ruffntuff, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. hogasm

    hogasm Adventurer

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    Anna you should consider having your trip published
  2. InvertedB

    InvertedB Adventurer

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    This is an amazing ride report! It really makes me want to make this trip as well, even though it feels like I've been to a number of these spots through reading your adventure. Keep them coming as you've got the time, they've been a treat to read.
  3. wrenchead

    wrenchead n00b

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    Anna,
    Great ride report! Sorry about all the rain.
  4. THB

    THB Been here awhile

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    Thank you Anna. You've sparked dreams I thought were lost forever.
  5. mtnlvnmelis

    mtnlvnmelis n00b

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    Add another local to your followers! I live in Nelson County, but work in Cville at UVa also. I started reading your report about three months ago and was instantly hooked.

    I lost my father one month ago today. I've been caught up in his illness, the hospital and subsequent placement of my Mom in assisted living for the past seven weeks or so. I couldn't wait to get back to your story and journey. With the recent losses in my life, and my wanderlust and desire to ride out the pain, your story means all the more to me now.

    Thanks for sharing your tale. I'd love to meet you someday and buy you a beer (of course at one of the amazing breweries down in good 'ol Nelson).

    Brava! Great writing. :clap
  6. forxlr8n

    forxlr8n Adventurer

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    <<< Radford here
  7. ruffntuff

    ruffntuff TUFRDR

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    Location:
    Charlottesville, Virginia
    Part 2: Day 7
    July 6th, 2012
    Crescent City – Cloverdale, CA: 290 miles

    Billy and I slept in, snuggled under the sheets, curled in each other’s warmness. Motivation to leave our comfy sanctuary was tough to find. The only thing that pulled us from our nest was the free breakfast buffet about to close downstairs.

    We fueled up on coffee, eggs, bacon and pancakes before packing up the bikes and finally hitting the road at 11am. Headed south on 101, we followed the coastline mostly. It was overcast and chilly, but the further south we got the warmer and sunnier it became.

    At times I began to notice a slight slip in the front break at traffic lights. I felt it taking longer than usual to stop. Billy and I pulled into a beach parking lot for a pit stop. I investigated and saw the fork seals on both sides were split and leaking fork oil onto the calipers. I texted a picture to Bee. He said he’d ship me new ones to San Francisco so I could have them replaced.

    [​IMG]

    We stood on the beach for a while. It was cold and windy, but all I could feel was how good life is. I feel so free and relaxed being on the west coast. The thought of going back to Virginia is depressing. Maybe I can find a job here.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I realized today I went over 10,000 miles since leaving Virginia. It is truly unbelievable. And the bike still feels solid. I guess I never imagined I would get this far.

    We stopped in Eureka to pick up sandwiches to bring into the Redwoods. As we headed down the Avenue of the Giants I felt the energy of the trees so settling. They are incredible. I’ve never seen such massive trees. It’s humbling and makes me feel so small in the world. It was similar to the feeling I had on the Denali Highway, riding for miles in open wilderness next to those amazing mountains.

    Like any other amazing beautiful place, every turn-off was packed with RV’s and travelers. We managed to find a small quiet area tucked away from the tourists to take a break and eat our lunch. I felt so peaceful and relaxed sitting there, surrounded by giants. I was speechless.

    [​IMG]

    Billy and I reached his family farm in Cloverdale a little before dark. It’s a beautiful place nestled between vineyards next to the Russian River. There are pastures with goats and llamas and chickens run free in the beautiful garden his mother tends.

    We had just enough daylight to walk down to the river for a swim. It was chilly but refreshing.

    It was a wonderful evening drinking beer, making nachos, and watching one of my favorite movies, Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I feel such a strong connection with Billy. It feels good to be here.
    ONandOFF likes this.
  8. Bike Nomad

    Bike Nomad Been here awhile

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    Thank you for continuing your tale. I've greatly enjoyed reading your journey.
  9. Blader54

    Blader54 Long timer

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    Hey ruffntuff! Nice update. Thanks again for continuing your report. I'm sure there are still many who follow and are inspired by your journey, as well as the ride.
  10. Klay

    Klay dreaming adventurer

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    right here on my thermarest
    Epic ride. Loss and love.
  11. prsdrat

    prsdrat Been here awhile

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    Excellent. Poignant and yet pensive.
  12. cycleman2

    cycleman2 Been here awhile

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    Well done Anna. I've spent a few hours the last couple of days reading and have enjoyed seeing your trip through your eyes.
  13. treebrain

    treebrain Bobby Lynch

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    First off, Anna, really nice, honest writing.

    Second, one of your entries took me to a memory:

    Without any pretense toward the ending of your tale, seventeen years ago in late winter, disgusted and disheartened after crawling out of the debris of a completely exhausting relationship, I made the ridiculously dramatic proclamation to friends that I was done with what I saw as the effort required to have a happy, loving and romantic relationship. They smiled and handed me the keys to their condo in Ocean City, Maryland, suggesting I get away for a few days.

    So late on that day in March, I got on my bike ('81 XS Eleven) and headed out in a cold, grey Virginia drizzle, cresting the Chesapeake Bay Bridge as the last of the light faded behind me in the West. It was all so perfectly miserable.

    A week later, I met the same friends to return their key and to let them know that I'd "just met this really interesting girl . . ."

    This morning I took our 15 year-old daughter to school and met that interesting girl, my interesting wife of sixteen years, for coffee.

    Funny how the Universe seems to enjoy itself by answering, "Oh yeah? Watch this."
  14. tvbh40a

    tvbh40a PSUViking

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    There is a quote for the books.:lol3
  15. skibum69

    skibum69 slave to gravity

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    still tagging along to see what you have to share with us next:D
  16. Super T

    Super T Ridge Runner

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    Now I'm NOT sure if you have returned to VA or remained in CA??? Nice twist to your story. You just never know where the adventure will take you when you're on 2 wheels:)
  17. conchscooter

    conchscooter Long timer

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    In the free advice with a lifetime's hindsight column...never sell that Radian. Too many memories are invested in it. Ask any rider over the age if 50 and everyone regrets getting rid of a special bike. No matter how awkward it is to keep.
  18. RoninMoto

    RoninMoto Wanderer

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    I totally agree! My 690 is going to be in my living room someday :D

    See you in South America Anna!
  19. cycleman2

    cycleman2 Been here awhile

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    Look forward to your next adventure.
  20. Greenhopper

    Greenhopper Adventurer

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    Ditto that, my very first motorcycle was an 86 Yamaha Radian with that very same paint. Bought it brand new for $1950.00 when I was in the Army. I've always had wistful thoughts of that machine, and I'd love to have it back. I used to load it up with some saddle bags from JC Whitney, and strap my tent and bedroll to the tail in the same fashion and migrate between my home in Washington and my grandparents in Arizona. I hope the rest of your story works out well.